Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Marie Goes To The Dogs

I recently received my friend Jen's Marie journal and was briefly stumped by her sub theme.  Jen asked that we imagine ourselves to be designers, offering up ideas and sketches for the queen's approval.  Turning the pages in her beautiful book, I was blown away by the work of my artist friends, as they presented lovely designs for dresses, shoes, hats, gardens, crowns and jewels.

Not wanting to repeat any of those ideas, and feeling more whimsical than serious, I tried to figure out what to do.  My first thought was an elaborate cake, but that whole Marie/cake thing has really been overdone.  Finally a brainstorm began swirling around my head, and I became the designer Jean Claude, would-be dog groomer to the queen.  And I just had the best time with this one, fussy cutting and all.  First page, my fictional alter ego:

After much searching, I was lucky enough to find a black and white picture of a man in full period dress, but he was facing the wrong way!  Then I remembered the mirror function on the printer and voila!  With one click he was turned around.

I colored him with my portfolio water soluble oil pastels (love the vibrancy of the colors) then added some details with glaze pens.  Did I mention fussy cutting?  I'm generally a really fast worker and fussy is ordinarily not in my vocabulary, but I spent a LONG time with scissors and craft knife on Jean Claude, and added shading to every inch of him.

The background is a Tim Holtz paper which I further embellished with inks and embossing.  The column that Jean Clade is leaning on, is from watercolor paper I inked and gave a faux marble treatment.

So, what is he looking at, anyway?  Why, his creation of course!  The design he hopes will win him the title of Superior Dog Groomer To The Queen.

Now, a disclaimer....I would NEVER actually do such a thing to a dog.  But Jean Claude is another story altogether.  Let me assure you, no live canines were hurt or humiliated in the making of this page.

I used a photo of this gorgeous standard poodle show dog (again, very careful fussy cutting and shading), and dressed her rather simply in netting and ribbon.  The hair and headdress are other matters.  Blonde to match her owner, the hair was done with yellow flock.  I knew I'd find a use for that old craft staple eventually.  Gold leaves, little fabric flowers, feathers and stick pins complete the chapeau.  Final touches, a seed bead necklace and some glittery nails.  Oh, and I did have the pooch presented on a cake plate. 


Tammy D said...

What a hoot! I love it and it is perfect!

Candy C said... are outta control!! This is hilarious! I love it! Your colors and pictures are awesome! You did a great job! I just love your sense of humor! <3 Candy

Debby said...

Too funny! But I bet there are people out there who dress up their dogs and cats too.

Elena said...

I can not tell you how much I've enjoyed these pages! They are GREAT!

Nancy Lynn said...

This is way too funny but cool. I never dressed up my dogs but my Mom always dressed up their dogs for the holidays and took pictures. You did a great job on these pages. She will love it.

Vic said...

Great pages! The poodle is hilarious and I'm sure Marie's favorite.

Diann said...

Fantastic ART and your humor wasn't missed...great job! Diann

Alicia said...

OH what a creative mind it took to create this one!! Love It!! *Hugs*

Elaine A said...

Eileen -

I love how this looks. A truly unique idea. All the fussy cutting and mirror imaging was well worth it. This project really is wonderful.

Elaine Allen

P.S. I am so glad that no canines were hurt during the excecution of your art!

Lori said...

This is hysterical, and so well thought out! Love it, and I know she will too!

Patzee said...

Eileen, you have done Jean Claude proud! He is finally receiving his long overdue recognition in the form of your almost over the top pages. Outstanding! And if Jean Claude were here today he would proclaim with pinky outstretched, "Magnifique!" I'll be giggling about that poodle for the rest of the day!

Deb said...

being a poodle breeder, I love what you did to this fussy poodle!!
Many of them actually don't mind being dressed up and made to look foolish, as long as you tell them how beautiful they are all the time you are doing it